We have December covered with great events + special discounts
Planning your family's winter break? Looking for holiday-themed events and activities? We’ve got you covered with our new Holiday Happenings calendar, which offers a family-friendly activity for every day December. Plus, we’ve managed to snag some deals for our readers—12 to be exact. That’s one for every day of Christmas (that's how the song goes, right?), and one-and-a-half for each day of Hannukah (yay, Judaism!).
Every deal is a great one, ranging from a discount on snacks at the John Hancock Observatory café to deals on some of the month’s hottest shows such as The Addams Family, The Joffrey Ballet’s Nutcracker and Goodnight Moon, to name a few. We’ve picked three of our favorite deals to get you started—you can thank us for playing negotiator (cue William Shatner) in the new year.
Ballet Chicago’s Nutcracker Sweets Party, at the Athenaeum Theatre on December 10 and 17, features a veritable flurry of fun for wannabe Claras and toy soldiers. The 12:30pm event includes cookie and ornament decorating, photo ops with the Sugar Plum Fairy (squeel!), doll tutu-making and how-to instructions for the ever-elusive perfect ballet bun—all for $25. And if you whisper the keyword TOC Kids upon arrival, you’ll receive a special Nutcracker-themed gift.
If you’ve never been to the Hideout, you’re missing out. It’s one of the most Chicago-y of all Chicago venues. And if you’ve never taken your kids to the Hideout’s annual holiday panto (December 16–18, now in its 5th year), they’re definitely missing out (we’ll reserve judgment of your parenting skills for when they’re teenagers). This British import features a cast of real characters: women playing men, a slew of animal characters and men playing women (Chicagoan and Welsh heartthrob Jon Langford stars this year as Cleopatra: Queen of the Denial). Mention TOC Kids at the show for a free screen-printed poster while supplies last.
Finally, for a great daytrip to Schaumburg, skip Ikea and head to the LEGOLAND Discovery Center. The center’s Holly Jolly Holidays celebration (December 9–January 1) features photo ops with your favorite blockheads, an Eskimo LEGO set, group activities, festive decorations and a chance for dad to finally play out his deepest childhood fantasies. (Besides growing up to be an astronaut, of course.) It will be easy on your pocketbook, too: Mention TOC Kids at the box office on December 12 and receive $10 admission.